This time of year, love is in the air – but is it in the things you buy? In Virginia’s Hampton Roads area, the Retail Alliance makes sure that love spreads from shoppers to small businesses all year long.
The Retail Alliance is a nonprofit organization committed to serving locally owned retailers in the Hampton Roads community, which includes cities such as Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Chesapeake. Founded in 1903, it has more than a century of experience with that mission. Members of the Retail Alliance receive benefits in the form of advocacy, informative webinars, advertising co-ops and partnerships with local police departments.
Beyond its work with small businesses, the Retail Alliance also has a unique program for local consumers. Through a convenient mobile app, consumers are invited to become local business “LOVEVAs.” It’s a simple program that brings consumers and small businesses together to serve each other’s needs.
Here’s how it works: Consumers download the LOVEVA app from iTunes or Google Play. Each time participating shoppers make a purchase at a participating local retailer, the shopper earns a heart. Once they’ve earned 10 hearts, shoppers get their choice of reward from participating retailers. Rewards can include a complimentary massage, discounted cleaning services or a free men’s tie. Shoppers can also share the love by sending rewards to their friends and family. The LOVEVA app itself is free, but the rewards make it endlessly valuable for Hampton Roads shoppers.
For businesses, the LOVEVA app presents an important opportunity to reach shoppers who are interested in buying local. Because the program is run by the Retail Alliance, participating businesses can be sure that they’re reaching consumers who are located in and familiar with the Hampton Roads area. Local businesses can sign up online to participate in the program. Memberships offer a listing in the LOVEVA directory online and in the app, collateral to promote the program in store and QR codes businesses can use to reward customers.
The Retail Alliance’s Be A Local LOVEVA program allows Hampton Roads shoppers to take local love with them wherever they go. The program is just part of what the Retail Alliance offers local businesses, but it’s an opportunity that’s not to be missed. For more information, visit www.retailalliance.com.